Words of wisdom from The Career Clinic

As mentioned in an earlier posting, I’m finding much wisdom in a new volume by Maureen Anderson called The Career Clinic: 8 Simple Rules for Finding Work You Love. In the next few postings, I’m going to bring you excerpts from the book and thoughts on how they tie into today’s tasks of planning our careers for tomorrow. The words in bold are excerpts generously provided by Maureen Anderson:

Looking for Your Dream Job? Go Ahead — Get Your Hopes Up
©2008 by Maureen Anderson

Do you love your job? Really love it? If you don’t, you have lots of company. It’s estimated four out of five people dislike what they do for a living, and many hate it. I think that’s a shame. That’s why I do a radio program called The Career Clinic, which helps people find work they’re passionate about–by passing along stories of those who’ve done just that. Here’s some advice from successful career changers…

No regrets.

If you’re contemplating a job change, give yourself a present: a clean slate. Let’s say you’ve spent the first ten or twenty years of your career doing the so-called wrong thing. You can stick with that and have a bad time for the next twenty or thirty years, or you can be thankful for everything you’ve learned so far…and use it to find happiness after all.

To me the word “regret” is a function of time. It’s what you feel after something goes wrong: “Ooh. I wish I wouldn’t have done that!”–but before you realize: “Oh! I am so glad I learned that lesson.”

Successful career changers approach life as an adventure. They dive into each new experience, perfect job or no, with a light touch. “I’ll have fun,” they say, “and I’ll learn a lot.” They frame mistakes as directions, which make it easier for them to get it right the next time.

Good words, Maureen. I recently met with a client who expressed concern about the way he changed jobs frequently over ten years ago. With reframing and letting go of regrets, we worked on how to say,

“Yes, it took me a time to find work where I fit in, could use my best skills, and concentrate on doing my best work. I’ve been there for ten years now. “

It is amazing how we hold ourselves back, quite certain that our flaws, mistakes, or lapses in judgment are apparent for all to see. Nah, others are too busy worrying about their own failings.

No regrets? That’s your assignment – to rethink those awkward times and morph into necessary stepping stones that got you where you are now.

If you would like to read more of Maureen Anderson’s book, please contact me. I have a few copies for sale and will be happy to provide details upon request.

If you would like to talk over your work life and receive help in reframing the bad stuff, please visit my website at www.anneheadley.com for contact information.

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